The Frugality Challenge: Gamification of Your Finances

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Want to play a game with us? This one will change your finances for the better.

We’re officially back on Twitter!

A couple weeks ago I celebrated our return to frugality, and lamented the causes for it. We had a good start to 2015 financially, and upped our savings rate dramatically. But we had also upped our spending rate. Not being a fan of lifestyle inflation, and because the second half of the year has been more bear and less bull as far as income has been concerned, I decided to dedicate myself back to frugality.

Turns out, a lot of you wanted to do the same. I wanted to find a way for us to share our wins. I wanted to find a way that was fun, and wouldn’t require you to read another thousand words every time you wanted to update the group on your progress. I wanted it to be competitive, because who doesn’t like the glory of winning?

I’m proposing a game.

I’m calling it The Frugality Challenge. Here’s how you play:

Using #FrugalityChallenge on Twitter, update us every time you do something financially awesome. There will be point values assigned for each awesome thing you do. Here’s what I’ve got so far:

Up to Once a Day

  • Use coupons on something you were already planning to buy. (That means no finding a coupon and  purchasing a new product just because you can “save.”) +100
  • DIY something. Whether it be furniture, rolling your own coins, or fixing something around the house.  Feel free to get a little creative on this one. If it’s saving you money because you did it yourself, it counts. +100
  • Sell something. Household goods. Cookies. As long as it’s independent of your day-to-day business  and not your body, it’s fair game. +100
  • Shop sales. (Again, only for products you were going to purchase anyways.) +100
  • Don’t spend all day. While I’m not a huge fan of organized no spending challenges, as I think they encourage post-challenge spending binges, there are some days where you don’t spend any money. And that’s better than going out and using a coupon on something you weren’t going to buy just to rack up points. So if you run into a day where you don’t spend any money, give yourself +50
  • Refer a friend to the challenge. Have them tweet that looks something like the following, so I know who to attribute points to. Points will be awarded after they tweet their first qualifying entry. +25

       “I just joined the #FrugalityChallenge thanks to @(yourhandlehere)!”

Up to Once a Week

  • Forgo a purchase…permanently. +300
  • Side hustle. If you’re already a blogger, blogging doesn’t count. This has to be something new you pick up as a result of the challenge, but once picked up can be used for as many weeks as you participate in it. +300
  • Cook all of your own meals. For the ENTIRE week. +300
  • Find free entertainment for your weekend. Or Wednesday night. Or whenever. Instead of going to the movies, find a free event, or have a fun night in with friends. I guess going to the movies can count….IF you have free tickets. +300
  • Shop around for a lower rate on a recurring bill, and take advantage of it. Or negotiate your bill down. While you can do this once a week to allow for different bills, it’s not cool to tell everyone you lowered your car insurance weekly.  We’ll know you’re lying. +500

Up to Once a Month

To be fair to people of all income levels, saving in and of itself will be rewarded; not the amount or percentage of income.

  • Stash money into accessible savings. (Emergency fund or any other savings goals you may have that you keep liquid.) +300
  • Stash money into investments/retirement funds. +300
  • Pay off more than the minimum payment on any debt you may have. +300

Up to Twice a Month

  • Budget +500
  • Track and Evaluate Your Spending +500

During this first month I’ll be open to additional suggestions.

To get points, you’d tweet out something like this:

“Just contributed to my Roth! +300 #FrugalityChallenge”

Or this:

“Sold my husband’s old He-Man toys and made BANK! +100 #FrugalityChallenge”

Key components?

  1. What you did.
  2. How many points you earned.
  3. The hashtag.

All of them are important. If one of them is missing, your points can’t be counted.

Winning The Frugality Challenge

You win by amassing the most points over the course of the month.

I want to stress honesty in this challenge, because the ultimate goal is to fatten up our wallets. Lying isn’t going to get us anywhere near that goal.

Plus, for now, the prize is the glory of winning.

There will be a winner announced on this same blog post every month. So you can bookmark it, pin it, or whatever you need to do. When you want to see who won, you’ll be able to find the final leader board here on the 9th of every month at the bottom of the post.

If you want weekly leader board updates, they’ll be going out every Monday inside my brand spanking new newsletter (along with other content.)  You can subscribe here:

Get Weekly Leader Board Updates in the Femme Frugality Newsletter

* indicates required

Points can be accrued from 12:00 AM US Eastern time on the 9th of every month until 11:59 PM on the 8th of the following month.  Every month all points will reset.

Ready? Set? Go fix your money!

[Tweet “I’m joining the #FrugalityChallenge. Think you can beat me?”]

Fair warning: I’m a competitive person.  I hope to get some other competitive people in the game, too, because the best way to build our collective finances will be to push each other.

If you plan on playing, please share your Twitter handle using the “Add Link” button below. This lets me know you’re okay with me sharing your handle. It will also help me keep track of points when I’m awarding them. Hopefully you’ll check the other participants out so we can really support each other! …and keep an eye on the competition. 😉

Play nice. Have fun. Save money.

Frugality ChallengeScoreboards

2015 October 9-November 8 Scoreboard

Congratulations to our winner, @kaybfminimalist! Here are the rest of the rankings:

  1. @kaybfminimalist +5800
  2. Penny +4600
  3. Hannah +3900
    @femmefrugality +3900
  4. @beachbudget +2400
  5. @middle_class101 +2250
  6. @brokeGIRLrich +1800
    Claudia +1800
  7. Tim Johns +900
  8. @grandmasreading +400
  9. Kyle +300
    Mad Money Monster +300
  10. Second Hand Millionaire +200

2015 November 9-December 8 Scoreboard Sponsored by Tiller

Congratulations to our winner, Liz! Here are the rest of the rankings:

  1. Liz +6450
  2. Hannah +5775
  3. Mel +900
  4. Penny +850
  5. Vickie +200
  6. Tonya +150

2015 Dec 9- 2016 Jan 8 Scoreboard

  1. Liz +5250
  2. Hannah +4850
  3. Vickie +2600
  4. Penny +2400
  5. Mel +1750
  6. Emilly +1700
  7. Tim +500

2016 Jan 9-Feb 8 Scoreboard

  1. Hannah +4650
  2. Jana +3650
  3. Liz +3500
  4. Emily +2300
  5. Mel +2050
  6. Jess +950
    Penny +950
  7. Daniel +500
  8. Heather +200
  9. Vickie +100

2016 Feb 9-Mar 8

1.Liz +2850
2. Penny +1900
3. Hannah +900
Vickie +900
4. Jana +25

2016 Mar 9-Apr 8

  1. @femmefrugality +3050
  2. @BCholly +2500
  3. @middle_class +1450
  4. @picksuppennies +1425
  5. @HannahLRounds +1350
  6. @twocuphouse +900
  7. @thiwifelife1 +750
  8. @prudebtfree +700
  9. @CMK_Harmony +100
  10. @thriftyMS +50

2016 Apr 9-May 8

  1. @HannahLRounds +3100
  2. @femmefrugality +2600
  3. @thiwifelife1 +3500
  4. @Lolobunnylife +1200
  5. @Frugal_AF +1150
  6. @twocuphouse +1100
  7. @becbier +800
    @middle_class101 +800
  8. @picksuppennies +700
  9. @CMK_Harmony +500
  10. @grandmasreading +200
  11. @frankfactsorg +100

2016 May 9-June 8

TBA. Get weekly updates by subscribing to the newsletter.

37 thoughts on “The Frugality Challenge: Gamification of Your Finances

  1. Penny @ She Picks Up Pennies

    Such a fun idea! 🙂 I’m curious to see how many people decide to participate. I’ve been having a ton of success selling things online lately. In fact, I have to photograph more things this weekend. What a good problem to have!

  2. kay ~ the barefoot minimalist

    HA! Love Tonya’s comment! 😀 You KNOW I love this idea, Femme! So glad it’s live now! I tried to add my link above, but screwed it up and now it won’t let me! HELP FEMME! :O

    1. Femme Frugality

      You are good! I didn’t even do anything lol. Must just need a few minutes on your computer or browser out something techy. THANK YOU for all of your support! You’re awesome!

    1. Femme Frugality

      Ha that’s probably true! I’m going to add a couple more ways tonight, so maybe print tomorrow! I forgot about debt and entertainment. Look for edits soon! So glad to have you on board!

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  4. Tim Johns

    WOAH! Wish I’d have read these rules sooner! I’m totally overdue for a +500 for using Tiller to mindfully-but-otherwise-effortlessly track my spending in a Google Sheet, at!

    Disclaimer: I work for Tiller. (But hey isn’t that another +100 for employee discount? And #FrugalityChallenge is just such a great idea I can’t help myself!)

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  6. Jana @ Jana Says

    I love challenges! And I love the idea behind this one!

    I’m going to pass on participating in December because I just can’t bring myself to concentrate on one more thing but I’m in for January!

  7. Hannah

    For a future month, can we add no food waste or creative use of leftovers as something with points? I feel like those are still struggle areas for me, and I could save a little bit of coin using that.

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  11. middle class

    I dropped out of the game when it was facebook only. I hope this isn’t an accidental repost and the contest is back on twitter!? I don’t think we should get any prizes except bragging rights, because that may cause people to cheat!

  12. Kyle

    Huh, interesting game. I made my own shelf brackets a couple days ago, I actually don’t buy anything most days and I’m having a night in with friends tomorrow. I’m game, but I don’t know if I’m enough of a twitter user to update everything. If you track and evaluate your spending, isn’t that usually coincide with budgeting?

      1. Femme

        Ahhh I need to get rid of that inLinkz thing. It’s super old. Not closed at all! Just use #frugalitychallenge on Twitter…simpler than you’d think to follow along! Sounds like you’d rock at this one!

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  14. Millennial Boss

    Great idea!
    I just sold my expensive SUV that was costing me $750 a month when you factor in car payment, insurance, maintenance, and gas. Now I live within walking distance of work. +MILLION in mental sanity points 🙂


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